2006 May 27

Seattle Sounders  1 - 0  Vancouver Whitecaps
Qwest Field, Seattle, WA

Seattle: Chris Eylander; Danny Jackson, Jake Besagno, Zach Scott, Ben Somoza (Seyi Abolaji 26'); Kevin Sakuda, CJ Klaas (Nate Boyden 90'), Roger Levesque, Andrew Gregor (Santa Maria Rivera 84'); Jamal Sutton (Craig Tomlinson 72'), Cam Weaver. Substitutes: David Mahoney, Gabe Sturm, Noah Merl.

Vancouver: Tony Caig; Steve Klein, John Jones, Anthony Noreiga (Tino Cucca 73'), Steve Kindel (Geordie Lyall 62'); Jeff Clarke, Dave Morris, Martin Nash, Alfredo Valente (Jay Alberts 62'); Joey Gjertsen, Sita-Taty Matondo (Dave Testo 46'). Substitutes: Josh Wicks, Adrian Cann, Stefan Leslie.

42' SEA - Gregor (PK)

Additional match reports: Sounders, Seattle Times, Whitecaps.

Match report by Ron Stickney:

It was just barely a penalty kick, and it made the difference as Andrew Gregor converted it to give the host Seattle Sounders a 1-0 win over the Vancouver Whitecaps. The win ended a streak of 6 draws between the two sides. The latest draw had occurred the previous evening in Vancouver. Chris Eylander earned the shutout not by making a lot of saves, but more by expertly pulling crosses and corner kicks out of the air. Vancouver had 10 corner kicks in the match.

Seattle forward Roger Levesque played the match as a midfielder and was effective at the job.

First Half

The first shot was Seattle's in the 2nd minute when Ben Somoza's throw-in was headed by a Vancouver defender in front of goal for a 10-yard header by Roger Levesque, which Tony Caig saved easily overhead.

Vancouver's first chance came in the 8th when Steve Kindel looked like he would get to a dangerous through ball at the right edge of the penalty area, but Eylander came out to pull the ball off Kindel's foot.

For Seattle in the 8th, a drop pass gave Kevin Sakuda a 30-yard shot up the middle but he sent it two yards wide.

Jeff Clarke took Vancouver's first shot in the 13th, volleying a cleared corner kick high behind goal. Then a good shot came from Joey Gjertsen at the top right corner of the penalty area, and Eylander made a fine diving save.

Seattle came right back when Jamal Sutton was served open into the penalty area on the right, but Caig made the right decision and was out to stuff the shot. Two minutes later from the other side Sutton tried to bend a shot over Caig and it went inches over the top far corner.

Gjertsen had another good chance for the Whitecaps in the 25th when Steve Nash challenged for a 50-50 ball and it deflected towards goal right in front of Gjertsen, who turned onto the ball and missed the near post by a half yard.

Seattle defender Ben Somoza had to leave the match in the 26th minute with a sprained ankle. He was replaced by Seyi Abolaji.

Sakuda continued the theme of the night, near misses, with a put-back shot from 30 yards in the 33rd after Vancouver cleared a ball from in front of goal.

For Vancouver in the 39th, Sita-Taty Matondo had a nice turn and shoot in the arc after being served by Gjertsen, but Eylander caught it with a small leap.

42' Gregor (PK). Cam Weaver was served a diagonal through ball from the middle towards the left corner. With a burst of speed, Weaver got to it first just inside the left edge of the penalty area, and after a touch on the ball by Weaver he was tripped up by Caig, who was just a bit late and could not stop his slide. It was a tripping foul, and a yard inside the box, so referee Yader Reyes didn't have much choice but to blow the whistle and point to the spot. Gregor put the penalty kick to the left side with Caig guessing the other way. 1-0 Seattle.

Halftime: Seattle 1-0 Vancouver

Vancouver had the first chance of the second half at 50' when Gjertsen beat Zach Scott to a ball sent up the right side. Gjertsen got into the penalty area with only Eylander to beat, but sent the shot 2 yards over the top near corner.

For Seattle in the 55th, Sutton beat a pair up front to serve a diagonal drop pass to Weaver, whose low shot missed the near post by a yard. CJ Klaas served a free kick to the near side for Roger Levesque's head, and another shot missed by a yard. Then Klaas won a loose ball and powered a shot from 30 yards, missing the top near corner by a yard. In the 67th, Klaas' free kick from the left side was bent to the far post, but Caig was there for the save.

Vancouver came close in the 68th when Nash fired a rising shot from deep in the right corner and it cleared the bar by just inches. Then second-half substitute Dave Testo shot up the middle from 20 yards and missed by a foot. In the 75th Nash fired a rocket from the top left corner of the box and again cleared the bar by just inches.

It was Seattle's turn for a near miss in the 77th when Gregor curled a cross over the goal area for a header by Levesque that missed the far post by a yard.

Vancouver's best chance came in the 81st when an attacker got in close on the right for a try at the far post, and Eylander made his best save, giving up a rebound in front of goal, but fortunately right to the feet of a teammate who cleared it.

Seattle substitute Craig Tomlinson looked like he had a sure goal in the 82nd when Klaas crossed square from the right side to the near post and Tomlinson was there first for a shot from 3 yards, but Caig had his hand in the right spot and knocked it back into Tomlinson, whose put-back shot just missed the post.

The last chances of the match came at 83'. Gregor tried to sneak a corner kick into the top near corner, but Caig touched it over the bar. Gregor's subsequent corner kick was served to the near side for a shot by sweeper Danny Jackson, but it hit the outside of the net behind the near post.

For the last 6 minutes plus 4 minutes of added time, Seattle's defense stood strong and denied Vancouver any good chances.

Final: Seattle 1-0 Vancouver

          Seattle   Vancouver
Shots:       20         9
Saves:        3         5
Corners:      7        10
Fouls:       15        17
Offsides:     2         2

29' SEA - Scott cautioned for a hard charge into Clarke at the touch line
42' VAN - Kindel cautioned, probably for dissent, after Seattle were awarded a PK
65' VAN - Clarke cautioned for chopping Weaver in the ankle at the halfway line
68' SEA - Gregor cautioned
78' SEA - Abolaji cautioned

Referees: Yader Reyes; Mark Matthews, Garth Trimble; Shahram Pourazari

Attendance: 2,998